Archive for the ‘space’ category: Page 9

Mar 13, 2024

Unveiling Mars’ Hidden Giant: The Discovery of the Noctis Volcano

Posted by in category: space

Sourabh Shubham: “This area of Mars is known to have a wide variety of hydrated minerals spanning a long stretch of Martian history. A volcanic setting for these minerals had long been suspected. So, it may not be too surprising to find a volcano here. In some sense, this large volcano is a long-sought ‘smoking gun’.”

The planet Mars is known for its vast array of inactive shield volcanoes, and a new volcano could be added to the family with a recent study presented at the 55th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, as a team of researchers announced the discovery of a massive volcano on Mars that is buried underneath the surface and could even possess a base comprised of glacier ice. This study holds the potential to help scientists better understand past volcanism and glaciation on the Red Planet that could provide clues to Mars’ geologic history.

For the study, the researchers used images from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera and data from the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM), which are both onboard NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), along with data from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) that was onboard the Mars Global Surveyor to analyze “Noctis Mons” (official name pending), which is located southeast of Mars’ Tharsis volcanic region and in the western region of Valles Marineris, known as the largest and deepest canyon in the solar system.

Continue reading “Unveiling Mars’ Hidden Giant: The Discovery of the Noctis Volcano” »

Mar 13, 2024

The Blueprint Newsletter: Stay Up-to-Date on Engineering, Tech, Space and Science News

Posted by in categories: engineering, science, space

Intersections reimagined: engineer-designed, light-free, and seamlessly efficient. 🤓

👉 to our tech newsletter, The Blueprint, which is your daily source of tech, science, and engineering innovation. Here you go:

Mar 13, 2024

Mining helium-3 on the Moon has been talked about forever—now a company will try

Posted by in category: space

There are so many investments that we could be making, but there are also Moonshots.

Mar 13, 2024

Astronomers Discover Heavy Elements after Bright Gamma-Ray Burst from Neutron Star Merger

Posted by in categories: innovation, space

Breakthrough discovery puts astronomers one step closer to solving the mystery of the origin of elements that are heavier than iron. An international team of astronomers — including Clemson University astrophysicist Dieter Hartmann — obtained observational evidence for the creation of rare heavy elements in the aftermath of a cataclysmic explosion triggered by the merger of two neutron stars.

The massive explosion unleashed a gamma-ray burst, GRB230307A, the second brightest in 50 years of observations and about 1,000 times brighter than a typical gamma-ray burst. GRB230307A was first detected by NASA’s Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope on March 7, 2023.

Using multiple space-and ground-based telescopes, including NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, the largest and most powerful telescope ever launched into space, scientists were able to pinpoint the source of the gamma-ray burst in the sky and track how its brightness changed.

Mar 12, 2024

Biomolecules from Formaldehyde on Ancient Mars

Posted by in categories: biological, space

Organic materials discovered on Mars may have originated from atmospheric formaldehyde, according to new research, marking a step forward in our understanding of the possibility of past life on the Red Planet.

Scientists from Tohoku University have investigated whether the early atmospheric conditions on Mars had the potential to foster the formation of biomolecules – organic compounds essential for biological processes.

Their findings, published in Scientific Reports, offer intriguing insights into the plausibility of Mars harboring life in its distant past.

Mar 12, 2024

Webb Space Telescope Shows Ultraviolet “Winds” Eroding a Young Star’s Protoplanetary Disk in Orion Nebula

Posted by in category: space

Research utilizing the James Webb Space Telescope highlights the destructive power of ultraviolet “winds” on the gas in protoplanetary disks surrounding young stars, shedding light on the intricate dynamics that limit the formation of gas giants in the cosmos.

Ultraviolet “winds” from nearby massive stars are stripping the gas from a young star’s protoplanetary disk, causing it to rapidly lose mass, according to a new study. It reports the first directly observed evidence of far-ultraviolet (FUV)-driven photoevaporation of a protoplanetary disk. The findings, which use observations from the James Web Space Telescope (JWST), provide new insights into the constraints of gas giant planet formation, including in our own Solar System.

Insights into gas giant planet formation.

Mar 11, 2024

A History of Total Solar Eclipses Seen by Astronauts From Outer Space

Posted by in category: space

Now, astronauts who witness solar eclipses do so from the International Space Station (ISS). But instead of looking at the sun, they look down at the Earth to observe a solar eclipse. “ISS astronauts can see the [moon’s] shadow but not the eclipse itself, because their windows don’t point toward the sun,” says Levasseur. Rather, remotely operated equipment on the station collects data from the eclipse, while astronauts peer at the darkened ground on the planet below.

The first time anyone got this unique view was in 1999, when Russian cosmonauts Viktor Afanasyev and Sergei Avdeyev, as well as French astronaut Jean-Pierre Haigneré, witnessed the 20th century’s final total solar eclipse from the former Russian space station, Mir. On August 11, they saw the moon’s shadow pass over England.

Mar 11, 2024

Titan’s Atmosphere: Insights into Methane Chemistry and Beyond

Posted by in categories: chemistry, space

What can Titan’s methane-rich atmosphere teach us about finding life beyond Earth? This is what a recent study published in Planetary and Space Science hopes to address as a team of international researchers investigated the photochemistry of Saturn’s largest moon, which is also the only moon in the solar system with a dense atmosphere, to ascertain if the moon’s methane-rich atmosphere can support life. This study holds the potential to help researchers better understand the conditions necessary for life to emerge, along with where to search for it beyond Earth.

“Titan’s atmosphere works like a planetary-sized chemical reactor, producing many complex carbon-based molecules,” said Rafael Rianço-Silva, who is a master’s degree student at the University of Lisbon and lead author of the study. “Of all the atmospheres we know in the Solar System, the atmosphere of Titan is the most similar to the one we think existed on the early Earth.”

For the study, the team used the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph (VLT-UVES) to conduct high resolution analyses of Titan’s hazy and methane-rich atmosphere. Using this data, the team identified possible traces of the tricarbon molecule (C3), which is known for being a building block for the development of complex molecules and has been previously identified in cometary comas and interstellar clouds, the latter of which was found using VLT-UVES. If confirmed, Titan will be the first planetary body to possess tricarbon either in its atmosphere or on its surface.

Mar 11, 2024

Northern lights chaser captures mysterious scene: “Like another galaxy”

Posted by in category: space

Good morning 🌅

The view was “awe-inspiring and a little scary,” Shang Yang told Newsweek, noting “it was definitely not part of normal aurora activity.”

Mar 11, 2024

At SXSW, Austin-based Apptronik, NASA explore what humanoid robots could do in space

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, space

At SXSW Jeff Cardenas, CEO of Austin-based Apptronik along with Shaun Azimi, of NASA’s discussed the possibilities of humanoid robots in space.

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